Closing moments of season-ending playoff loss will motivate Joel Embiid

Heather Diaz
May 11, 2018

The Celtics defeat the 76ers 114-112 to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.

Following the Game 5 victory, a clearly frustrated Joel Embiid walked off the court without shaking any hands and that reportedly upset a bunch of players on the Celtics.

The Celtics hit enough free throws over the final 10.8 seconds to secure a 114-112 victory and close out the second-round National Basketball Association playoff series.

"Me and Ben, we have a lot of room to grow", Embiid said. And going into the playoffs we felt like we had a really good chance, especially after winning 16 in a row (to close the regular season). Peak Embiid. The only thing lacking was a 3-pointer, but he finished with 27 points (9-for-18 shooting), 12 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 blocks in his best performance of the postseason. We even saw that in the final two games of the series. In addition to Embiid, Simmons and 2017 No. 1 overall pick Markelle Fultz, Philadelphia could have $25 million in projected cap space this summer if it renounces the rights to free agents Redick, Ersan Ilyasova, Marco Belinelli and Amir Johnson. "It sucks but you got to learn from it and come back next year and do better". "And it'll be a lot easier for us to come in and get games done and not put ourselves in a hole like we did". And then we changed it and we wanted to get the third seed.

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Embiid clearly did - and has set lofty goals for next season. "I feel like I had a lot more to go", he said. "I was thinking about it, just looking at (Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook), what they did their first season together".

"He was, like, 'There's going to be a lot of rings on these, '" Embiid said.

As a wise man once said: Trust the process.

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